Be a Friend to Yourself and Others

August 25-31, 2014

We are often our own worst enemies. A character in the Pogo comic strip declared: “We have met the enemy, and he is us.” To refuse to learn in school (and throughout life), to neglect one’s health, to waste opportunities, to be of an abrasive disposition, to alienate friends –all this is to be one’s own enemy; to do oneself many disfavors.

The other side of the coin says, “Be a true friend to yourself, do yourself favors.” Some will say that such encouragement is unnecessary, since people by nature love themselves and seek their own interests first. True, but self-seeking is not the same as being one’s own best friend. In fact, it is self-love, the “me 1st” attitude, that underscores the saying of the comic strip that: “the enemy is us.”

Some may feel that friendship to oneself is ego-centered and has too narrow a base; friendship is a relationship with other people. True again, but it’s also true that many people hate others because they hate themselves. So, it would seem, if you feel right about yourself and know how to be a true friend to yourself, you’re in a better position to be a friend to other people.

You do yourself a favor when you’re truthful about yourself. Honest introspection, difficult as it is, is needed. It reveals many an unpleasant fact, and these must be known before they can be dealt with. To confess honestly: “I am a sinner” is a prerequisite, immediately to be followed by reliance on Jesus Christ as the Redeemer, Forgiver, Friend, Reconciler, and Healer. Now spiritual growth can begin, continue, and increase. Now there can be a progressive realization of one’s potential in all dimensions of life. Now you can be a friend to yourself and to others.

Jesus declared: “I have told you this so that My joy may be in you

and that your joy may be complete.”  John 15:11